If you’ve ever been in a car accident without insurance, but you were not at fault, you have probably wondered what your options are. This article provides an answer to that question by outlining the possible scenarios and discussing the most likely one to happen.
Florida Statute 324.021 mandates that every motor vehicle registered in the state of Florida must have documentation demonstrating financial responsibility for at least $10,000 in damages. Unfortunately, many drivers on Florida highways aren’t following this law, and Florida has one of the highest rates of uninsured drivers.
What Happens if You Get into a Car Accident Without Insurance, But You Were Not at Fault?
For car insurance, Florida is a no-fault state. It implies that even if the car accident was your fault, the other driver’s relatively modest damages or injuries should be covered by their auto insurance policy. So if the driver you hit had uninsured or underinsured motorist coverage, you’re in luck since their car insurance would pay for all losses, damages, pain and suffering, and mental distress.
Standard insurance usually only covers property damage and medical bills. If you are not at fault for the crash, it is crucial to understand your legal rights and responsibilities in this situation.
What Does it Mean to Be at Fault?
If you are involved in a car accident in Florida, you may be held responsible for the damages. To be held at fault, you must have acted negligently. Negligence can be defined as a lack of care or an act below the standard.
In addition, it is important to remember that many factors can influence whether or not someone is at fault in a car accident. Therefore, if you have been injured due to an accident, it is crucial to speak with an attorney to learn more about your legal rights.
So, in what case might you be at fault? You may be at fault if you:
- T-boned another vehicle
- Rear-end another vehicle
- Drove while intoxicated
- Got sidetracked by texting
What Happens If You’re at Fault?
If you are in a car accident without insurance but you were not at fault, then the following consequences can happen:
The other driver involved in the accident can sue you for medical bills, damage to their car, lost wages, and future earning capacity.
- Driver’s license and car registration suspension
Florida Department of Highway Safety and Motor Vehicles may suspend your driver’s license and registration for not having car insurance.
- Civil penalties
If you drive without insurance and your registration is suspended, you’ll have to pay a reinstatement fee from $150 to $500–depending on the number of violations. Furthermore, the costs are different depending on whether you were at fault. If you were at fault, infractions could remain on your license for anywhere from three to ten years.
What Happens If the Other Party Was at Fault?
If you were in a car accident that was not your fault, and the other driver didn’t have auto insurance, here are some options you can take.
- Personal Injury Protection (PIP)
In Florida, it’s necessary to have car insurance that also provides personal injury protection. You qualify if you report the accident within 14 days, and your insurance covers up to $10,000 in damages. Florida Statutes establish that insurance companies cannot increase rates unless the insurer can make a good faith determination that the person driving your car was substantially at fault for the accident.
- Uninsured/Underinsured coverage
While PIP is required, if you choose to have underinsured or uninsured coverage, it will cover you, family members in your car at the time of the collision, and anyone driving your vehicle with permission. However, it will not cover property damage on your motor vehicle.
- File a lawsuit against the other driver
If you want to recover damages exceeding $10,000 for the injury of more than one person, or if you have PIP partiality, you can sue the other driver. However, winning a settlement from that individual may not be easy. But, remember that if you were not at fault, diminished value claims might be an option.
Can I Get Insurance Coverage After My Car Accident?
The sooner you buy insurance, the more benefits and discounts you can get. Get an SR-22 or FR-44 if you want to prove you have liability auto coverage. Contact a lawyer to get advice on communicating with your insurance company so they can understand what you need.
Find Out Now!
If you are involved in a car accident without insurance and are not at fault, contact Pacin Levine, P.A. at 1-800-247-2727 as soon as possible. We have experienced auto accident lawyers who will work diligently on your behalf to get you the compensation you deserve.